Tag Archives: blues

New EP from Metacara Released Today

Kyla Rae and Vince Nania are Pittsburgh based duo Metacara and today they’ve released their 2nd EP, Car Talks. I can’t really nail down a genre for them because they incorporate many. But, if you’re a fan of Phantogram, Purity Ring, and Wolf Alice (I’m thinking the Blush EP), you will definitely enjoy Metacara. In comparison to their first release in 2015, Stone Love, they feel like Car Talks is more mature. The name of the band itself means, “Many Faces,” which is super cool and appropriate for a group that feels their music is growing as they grow themselves.

When I hung out with Kyla and Vince recently, they told me this EP was inspired by the kinds of talks that you have in the car. You know, like when you’re going on a road trip — you’re in the car for a long period of time, why not talk about something deep that’s been on your mind? And bonus: your travel mate can’t escape you, mwaahahaha.

Check out the video for one of the new tracks, “Pilsen” below:

After you’ve watched that, check out the rest of the EP below via Soundcloud:

When you listen to the title track, make sure you pay attention at the 1:48 mark where the song changes it up a little bit. I love when one song almost sounds like two different songs AND IT WORKS. That’s what happens here. Magical.

“Over the Edge” has a little bit of a darker feel, which I especially appreciate at this time of year. The air is crisp and fall has arrived, Halloween is coming, and I usually feel a teeny bit bitter that the bitter, cold weather is approaching. Sometimes that’s what puts me “over the edge,” not sure about you. Juuuuuuust kidding. Sort of. Anyway, all of the tracks flow very nicely with each other and the EP ends with “Ceilings.” At 1:38, this song brings another beat that I’ve fallen in love with. The sound is blues-y and adds another level of anticipation followed by a rock vibe that carries out the rest of the song. After checking out Car Talks, you’ll see what I mean about nailing down a genre. Maybe I’ll make one up just for them.

The Car Talks EP is available on all major music platforms, so go grab it on whichever one strikes your fancy!

AND if you’re in the Pittsburgh area this Saturday, go check them out for their release party at James Street Gastropub!

 

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Check ‘Em Out: Cavemouth

Cavemouth

“Guaranteed to get you up and out of your seat and sweating, Cavemouth are the aural equivalent to a night on a stairmaster, drinking Jack Daniels through a pair of fishnet tights.”

Cavemouth are a primal lo-fi funk four-piece who sound as though they live on the wilds of Exmoor (UK) on a strict diet of roadkill, making music to keep the neighbors away and lure the foxes in. Their gritty original sound blends blues, funk and hip-hop with African-influenced tunes and mind-altering lyrics.

Fronted by Sketchy Lex on filthy guitar and vocals, Wreckless Richie on drums, Ms. Mo on funked-up bass and vocals and Mr. Duncan ‘The Hook’ Hook on saxophone, the band have known each other for years. Growing up in rural Devon, they had to make their own entertainment by putting on their own raves and free parties, a past that has certainly helped to shape their sound.

Inspired by everything around them from politics and religion to nature, Cavemouth are influenced by Prince, ESG, Busta Rhymes, Leadbelly, Jack White, Queens of the Stone Age and Jethro Tull.

Check them out on Souncloud HERE.

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Album Stream: Jesus on the Mainline

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NYC-based jam band Jesus On The Mainline announces the release of their debut self-titled EP. Their sound is reminiscent of rock greats The Black Crowes and Janis Joplin, while simultaneously drawing influences from blues, jazz and funk classics like Stevie Wonder, Louis Armstrong and Quincy Jones.  This fifteen-piece band fuses jazz, soul, bluegrass and rock for an improvisational music experience that is unique from show to show.

Lead Vocalist Andrew Neesley is an award-winning musician, who flavors this unique musical collective with his contemporary jazz background. He performed with the Grammy-nominated Bobby Sanabria Big Band, while receiving his advanced degree from the Manhattan School of Music. Jesus On The Mainline formed in 2012 in New York City and currently features a rotating cast of fifteen active members. Singers Mel Flannery, Amanda Brecker and Tim Emmerick compliment frontman Andrew Neesley’s lead vocals, while a sprawling five-piece instrumental section lead on the horns, percussion, keyboards, and guitars.

Neesley has played renowned venues such as Carnegie Hall, the Kennedy Center, The Apollo Theater and The Jazz Standard. He has also been awarded the ASCAP Young Jazz Composer’s Award, the Student Award for Best Engineered Studio Album for DownBeat Magazine and won the National Trumpet Competition. Jesus On The Mainline has played sold out shows at famous New York venues, such as Bowery Ballroom and Mercury Lounge.

You can listen to the full EP stream below that Crave described as “…A rising sound that swells like a wave as it blends the spirit of Aretha Franklin into a soulful dance-romp through territories inhabited by Fitz and The Tantrums, Portugal. The Man and beyond.”

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Stream: Jesus on the Mainline 

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Check ‘Em Out: Dwight & Nicole

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Dwight & Nicole, an American roots band formed by recording artists Dwight Ritcher and Nicole Nelson, will be self-releasing their new album, Shine On, on April 22, 2014Shine On puts some impressive talent on display:  gorgeous vocals, developed songwriting skills, and masterful playing were all captured live at Boston’s Rear Window Studio. The delivery is often exciting, always multi-dimensional, and never run-of-the-mill. Dwight & Nicole express deep emotion effortlessly on every track of Shine On.  This will be their first major release, heavily funded by their devoted fans via music-oriented crowd-sourcing site PledgeMusic.

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Their performances have inspired comparisons to some of the greats — Etta James and John Lee Hooker, the Rolling Stones and the Staple Singers — but it is their own fresh blend of spirited blues, rock, and gospel that will land them a spot among the celebrated music makers. Following their critically acclaimed independent release !Signs, the Boston Globe called them, “a tour de force,” and named them among the “25 Most Stylish of the Year.”  They have garnered four Boston Phoenix award nominations, six Boston Music Award nominations and Nelson just nabbed a BMA for “Female Vocalist of The Year.”

In September of 2012, Nicole appeared on NBC’s #1 hit show “The Voice,” knocking out all four coaches and winning the hearts of millions with her rendition of Leonard Cohen’s “Hallelujah.” The song was a hit of its own, rising to #26 on the iTunes Pop chart, and propelling a wave of nationwide appreciation for Nelson’s home grown style. The bright lights of network TV also shed much deserved light on her band—New England’s best kept secret Dwight & Nicole—helping the group to shatter through the glass ceiling that most self-promoting indie artists are up against today.

Their music has already been featured on TV shows such as “Nikita” on CW, “The Forgotten” on ABC, “Missing” on Lifetime, and “The Cleaner” on A&E.  Dwight & Nicole starred in the documentary film “Where’s The Music At?” They have performed live at countless world class venues and festivals around the world including Montreal Jazz Festival, Tanglewood, Life Is Good Festival, Symphony Hall, The Somerville Theatre, The Tennessee Theater, The Paradise, The Higher Ground, and The Blue Note in NYC.

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Dwight & Nicole have shared the stage with many other great artists including BB King, Buddy Guy, Dave Brubeck, Dr. Maya Angelou, Ray Lamontagne, Los Lobos, Alison Krauss, Martin Sexton, Levon Helm, Norah Jones, Dr. John, Natalie Cole, Winton Marsalis, The Avett Brothers, Raphael Saadiq, Michael Franti and Spearhead, Carly Simon, The Funk Brothers, Maceo Parker, Chuck Berry, Jimmy Buffet, Biz Markie, Little Richard, Angelique Kidjo, Preservation Hall Jazz Band, Irma Thomas, and Jerry Lee Lewis.

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Check ‘Em Out: Arum Rae

Arum Rae
“…a smoky, uplifting sound that fuses blues, rock, country and pretty much every genre in between.” – USA Today
 
“…we’re digging her combination of raw, bluesy vocals and glitchy electronics.” – NYLON
 
“…sultry cyber-soul.” – SPIN

Brooklyn’s captivating modern day siren Arum Rae is gearing up to self-release her Warranted Queen EP next Tuesday, and in advance, she’s rolled out her dynamic new single “Something’s Happening To Me” with Noisey. “Something’s Happening To Me” is symbolic of Arum’s recent transformation from shedding her traditional singer-songwriter roots, to her entrancing new endeavor under her given name.

Listen/download: Arum Rae – “Something’s Happening To Me”

Her new single follows closely on the heels of her previous stand-out singles “Warranted Queen” and “2001”. Arum’s ability to transcend styles allows the music to resurrect the soul, feel the blues, and then re-invent rock through her deeply rooted foundation as a songwriter. After relocating to Brooklyn from Austin, Arum shed the White Dress moniker and teamed up with producer Sanford Livingston for this new EP (and forthcoming album). Everything Arum has lived through and all of the songs that have been born from it are not meant to impress, they’re meant to lead.

Although being a new endeavor, Arum Rae is no stranger to the stage. She’s toured extensively over the past several years, opening up for and sharing stages with artists like Willie Nelson, Rodriguez, The Kills, Gary Clark Jr., Dan Auerbach, BB King, The Civil Wars, and Peter Bjorn & John, to name a few. With a renewed energy and passion, Arum looks to 2014 to embolden artists and singers like herself to pursue their passions with pause, regret or fear.

Listen/download: Arum Rae – “Warranted Queen”

Listen/download: Arum Rae – “2001”

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Newest Love: Best Revenge

After almost 15 years of friendship, guitarist, songwriter and producer Keaton Simons (Gnarls Barkley,Snoop Dogg, Tre Hardson of The Pharcyde) and experimental drummer, songwriter and producer Deantoni Parks (The Mars Volta, Bosnian Rainbows, T-Bone Burnett, John Cale of The Velvet Underground) have finally come together to form their newest project, Best Revenge.

“Brother Blue” kicks off with the peculiar menace of a 80s film score. It soon devolves into a sneering rockabilly track, lacerating the listener with both a swaggering guitar and bold, vocal machismo. The lyrics convey wisdom through hurt, and Parks’ drums throb with the pulse of reckoning. This is an accessible song with an authentic blues rock mentality… You don’t hear a new track like this often. — INDIE SHUFFLE

Best Revenge mixes modern and old school sounds for a down-home dirty, raw rock ‘n roll vibe with a modern, technological spin. Keaton sings and plays guitar (including electric and acoustic guitars, as well as baritone and fretless), and Deantoni plays drums while he simultaneously live samples Keaton’s voice and plays it on the keyboard through a series of computerized effects – note: there are no loops in Best Revenge. The result is thoughtful music that excites and feels damn good. With a massive sound coming from just the two artists, this new project calls upon the adage “seeing is believing.”

Deemed “a triple threat” by his hometown’s Los Angeles Times, Keaton Simons has been captivating audiences for years with his raw, gritty voice, soul-baring songwriting, and incomparable, sought-after electric and acoustic guitar work. He’s been brought on as a guitarist, as well as bassist, singer, writer and musical director for such notable acts as Gnarls Barkley, Snoop Dogg, and Tre Hardson of The Pharcyde. With his own solo project, Keaton has co-produced and released records on major labels, licensed hundreds of songs for TV and film, toured nationally and internationally, and performed on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno, The Ellen DeGeneres Show, The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson and Last Call with Carson Daly.

Hailing form Newnan, Georgia, Deantoni Parks is a new wave/avant-garde experimental drummer, songwriter, actor and record producer. He has written, toured and collaborated with T-Bone Burnett, Bosnian Rainbows, The Mars Volta, Meshell Ndegeocello, John Cale of The Velvet Underground, Yoko Ono, Moby, Basement Jaxx, and Cody Chesnutt. Additionally, Deantoni wrote and played drums for the Grand Theft Auto 5 original soundtrack, and is co-founder of Dark Angels alongside producer and keyboardist Nicci Kasper, as well as a member of KUDU.

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Listen: Best Revenge – “Brother Blue”

After meeting almost 15 years ago through jazz/funk trio Soulive, Keaton Simons and Deantoni Parks have not only been close friends, but true admirers of each other’s respective work. Best Revenge is the first of what they hope will be many collaborative projects. Fans will have the opportunity to catch them live in Austin, Texas this week at SXSW. (See schedule below.)

LIVE AT SXSW //

FRI 3/14 @ Austin Ale House – 3PM
301 W 6th Street, All Ages, No Cover

FRI 3/14 @ Listening Room At Winflo – 6:30PM
1315 W 6th Street, All Ages, No Cover

SAT 3/15 @ Quantum Collective Southwest Invasion, Whole Foods Rooftop – 7PM
525 N Lamar Blvd, All Ages, No Cover
http://qc2014.eventbrite.com

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Check ‘Em Out: Clairy Browne & The Bangin’ Rackettes

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Already breakout stars in their native Australia, Clairy Browne & The Bangin’ Rackettes, who fuse a unique blend of soul, blues, doo-wop, jazz and R&B with Clairy’s powerful, soulful vocals at the forefront–have signed with the U.S. label Vanguard Records and will release their debut album Baby Caught The Bus on May 21. Their first single “Love Letter” is now #1 Most Added at Triple A Radio this week, while Baby Caught The Bus climbs to #15 Most Added. “Love Letter” also hit Amazon’s “Hot Singles: 20 Songs We’d Like to Date”.  The band will have their Tuesday, April 9th Los Angeles, CA show at The Troubadour taped for future airing on an episode of NBC TV’s “Last Call With Carson Daly.” On Thursday, April 11, they’ll perform live on Los Angeles’ KCSN “Afternoon Music Mix with Sky Daniels.” That can be heard in the greater Los Angeles area on 88.5fm or around the world online at www.kcsn.org.

Baby Caught The Bus is gaining strong praise from the media, in his album review for No Depression, Grant Britt declared, “Melbourne’s Clairy Brown & The Bangin’ Rackettes is the best stuff to come along in decades. This thing opens with a bang. ‘Love Letter’ leaps out at you like a Stax 45, blowing you back to the ‘60s through a funky time warp. Baby Caught The Bus is a treasure trove for r&b lovers, a ‘60s time capsule, a show and dance ensemble concept  that’s been away far too long. Import this one to your collection immediately for maximum satisfaction.”
The group just launched their U.S. tour at SXSW in Austin and are already blowing away U.S. audiences. In his live review for Bust Magazine at SXSW, writer Christian Detres described the group’s performance “With a peal of trumpet and a trill on a snare, Clairy Browne and her girls ginned up a stompy 60s revival that had the crowd dancing and spilling their vodka lemonades all over the floor.”
Clairy Browne & the Bangin’ Rackettes first gained international attention when “Love Letter” was featured in Heineken’s award-winning campaign The Switch and has surpassed 1 million views online!

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Download: Hollis Brown – “Down On Your Luck”

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After releasing their debut EP last year, the NYC-based band is gearing up to put out their first full-length album, Ride On The Train. Full of gritty jams and soft, sweet ballads, Ride On The Train will be released March 5th via Alive Records.

Despite its title, album track “Down On Your Luck” sets a bright, hopeful tone with twangy guitars and a playful vocal melody. “Doghouse Blues” is a straight-up bluesy rock song with rollicking melodies and dirty guitar licks. “Walk On Water” kicks it up a notch with raw vocals and screeching guitar solos. Tracks like the melancholic “If It Ain’t Me” and the powerfully optimistic “Faith & Love” showcase the band’s vulnerable side. The album closes on a sweet note with “Nightfall,” fading out with smooth, crooning vocals drifting above light, dreamy instrumentation.

Having already performed alongside Deer Tick and Caveman, Hollis Brown will hit the road for a mini East-coast tour this month. Be sure to catch them live in your city, and stay tuned for more from Hollis Brown coming soon!

Download: Hollis Brown – “Down On Your Luck”

Hollis Brown on Tour:
1/11: Annapolis, MD @ Metropolitan
1/16: Pittsburgh, PA @ Club Cafe
1/17: Cleveland, OH @ Beachland Ballroom
1/18: Columbus, OH @ Rumba Cafe
1/19: Frederick, MD @ Cafe Nola
2/01: Burlington, VT @ Red Square
2/02: Boston, MA @ Great Scott
2/16: Philadelphia, PA @ Milkboy

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Download: Hollis Brown

“Hollis Brown make music that sounds just as alive today as it would’ve in 1966 and will 40 years from now.”
—SPIN

“Rambunctious, twangy blues-rock…”
—Time Out New York

Born and bred in New York City, Hollis Brown embarked on a pilgrimage to Nashville to capture their authentic sound. They shacked up for two weeks in the backyard cabin/studio of producer Adam Landry (Deer Tick, Middle Brother), and found themselves. They recorded everything live, straight to analog tape. The result was a warm, vintage sound that displays the band’s explosive live energy. Their new EP, Nothing & The Famous No One, takes the listener back to that cabin to experience the raw vibe, smell the smoke, and feel alive. Download “Spoonful” below, which features vocals from John McCauley of Deer Tick.

Download: Hollis Brown – “Spoonful”

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Guitar Center Sessions Presents: Kenny Wayne Shepherd

More news from Guitar Center: their “Guitar Center Sessions” series provides inspiration from iconic artists in the industry to aspiring musicians.

Sorry ladies, Kenny married Mel Gibson's daughter Hannah in 2006, and they had a child in 2007.
Sorry ladies, Kenny married Mel Gibson’s daughter Hannah in 2006, and they had a child in 2007.

 

This time, their speaker is four time Grammy nominated, blues rock musician, Kenny Wayne Shepherd. This free event is being held in Pasadena, CA at the local Guitar Center. It’s next Wednesday, the 18th, at 7:00 pm. Highlights from the session include secrets from Kenny on topics ranging from technique to songwriting. He’s also going to talk about his own new guitar design for Fender, called the Fender Signature Series Stratocaster.

Kenny Wayne Shepherd has received two Billboard Music Awards, two Orville H. Gibson awards, and the Blues Foundation’s Keeping The Blues Alive Award. At the age of 21, he opened for The Rolling Stones!  He has sold millions of albums with his most recent release being a DVD/CD project entitled 10 Days Out: Blues from the Backroads, which follows Kenny as he travels the country to jam with and interview the last of the authentic blues musicians. 

Some of his best known songs include, “In 2 Deep”, “Last Goodbye”, and “True Lies”. But, as usual, you can go to his website for any more information.

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